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I have a server that runs a postgres database that contains about 200MB of data. Currently I have a cron job setup on my home computer which:

  1. ssh's into my server
  2. runs a remote script which makes a backup of the database
  3. scp's that dump over to my local hard drive for storage. Each dump is 20MiB.
  4. does this every six hours (one months of backups is roughly 2GiB)

The problem with this setup is that if my local machine goes down for whatever reason, no backups will be made. Also, I can't have the cron run from the server, because I can't have it scp'd to my local machine from my server (firewalls and all that crap).

My local machine is running Ubuntu 10.04, and my server is Ubuntu 9.10 server edition. I looked into Ubuntu One, but currently it's gui-only. I also looked into dropbox, but it's a pain in the ass to get setup in linux without gui support. Amazon S3 looks good but it's not free (yet dirt cheap). Is there any other alternative that I should look into?

I'd prefer something where I can just have my script dump the database into a directory, and have the backup service 'watch' that folder and sync accordingly. I can maybe also have my local machine sync to the cloud backup so I have even more redundancy, plus easy access to my backups for use in testing.

Edit: My server is a VPS, so what solution I end up using has to be 100% software based.

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4 Answers 4

Myself I use tarsnap to backup a similar server. It basically behaves just like tar, except that your archives get stored in "the cloud" and that you automatically get client side encryption, data deduplication etc.

It behaving just like tar means that you'll have to/can setup your own cron scripts etc.

Your backups are actually being stored in Amazon S3, but first has to pass the tarsnap server, which perform some additional magic.

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What about backing up on Amazon S3? Check out this link: "a list of amazon S3 backup tools"

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Personally, I would persevere with dropbox as it looks ideal for your requirements and the first 2-GB is free.

I agree the Dropbox forum tread on text based installs looks complicated but I note there's the following comment at the top:

Note: these instructions are no longer necessary with the latest version of the Linux Dropbox client (0.7.110). Just install normally -- RH

I haven't looked at this version but it might be worth a second look.

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+1 on tarsnap.

as for dropbox setup on a CLI only machine, the setup page on the wiki you are reading is now obsolete.

if you use one of the new 'experimental' builds (which are completley stable for me), the linking process is a snap. here a link to the most recent experimental version as of this post: http://forums.dropbox.com/topic.php?id=20994&replies=12

...just run the daemon from cli, and it will render a URL for you to copy and paste into another machine. (you could always use elinks on the cli machine too.)

im not sure if this is allowed, and if no i am sorry, but if you decide to try dropbox, use this link: https://www.dropbox.com/referrals/NTY2OTYyOQ and you will get an extra 250MB

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